On April 30, 1918, the waning days of World War 1, the British patrol ship Coreopsis, while sailing off the Belfast Lough in Ireland, came upon a disabled German submarine, the UB-85, floating on the surface of the North Atlantic. The crewmembers of the Coreopsis were stunned by their discovery as they did not often come upon non aggressive German U Boats, especially not in the middle of the day.
The crew of the UB-85 was picked up by the Coreopsis after they abandoned ship with no provocation. Once on board the British patrol ship, the UB-85’s commander, Captain Gunther Krech, was interrogated immediately. One of the first questions asked by the British officers conducting the interrogation regarded the decision to remain on the surface even after the obviously British Coreopsis came within the UB-85’s line of sight.
According to Captain Krech, his U Boat surfaced the night before in order to recharge the submarine’s batteries. Krech was on deck with some men and a few of his officers, getting some fresh air and having a smoke, when an abrupt surge rocked the ship and a heavy weight seemed to bring down the starboard bow. Out of the darkness of the night, what the captain referred to as, a strange beast climbed out of the ocean and onto the side of the U Boat. The following is the description of the beast as told by Captain Krech to his British captors:
"This beast had large eyes, set in a horny sort of skull. It had a small head, but with teeth that could be seen glistening in the moonlight. Every man on watch began firing a sidearm at the beast, but the animal had hold of the forward gun mount and refused to let go."
Captain Krech continued, stating the proportions of the beast were so immense that it rocked the U Boat and caused it to list greatly to the starboard side. Fearing that the ships open hatch would dip below the water line, which would subsequently flood the U Boat and sink it, Captain Krech ordered his men to continue their barrage. The crew continued firing upon the beast until it finally released the forward guns and disappeared back into the night blackened ocean.
Krech noted that during the struggle the forward deck plating of the UB-85 had been damaged rendering the U Boat incapable of submerging, the reason why the Coreopsis was able to catch the UB-85 at the surface. The crew’s retelling of the encounter, along with that of the captain’s, was chronicled by members of the British Navy only hours after the U Boat was found. The UB-85 was then cleared of any remaining crew that may have remained on board and sunk by the Coreopsis.
Today there remains no explanation that would adequately explain the events which resulted in the sinking of the UB-85 and the capture of her crew.
There remains no physical evidence to suggest just what attacked the UB-85 on April 30, 1918, perhaps if the UB-85 could one day be found and examined, especially the reportedly damaged forward deck plating, we may be able to gain a better understand of the events which transpired.
On April 30, 1918 the crew of the UB-85 had an encounter with a mysterious beast which climbed aboard the starboard bow of the vessel and attached itself to the forward guns.
The Stats– (Where applicable)
• Classification: Sea Monster
• Size: Unknown
• Weight: Unknown
• Diet: Unknown
• Location: Off the Belfast Lough in Ireland
• Movement: Swimming
• Environment: North Atlantic Ocean